Healthy eating helps your joints

Unhealthy food choices and limited physical activity can lead to excess weight gain and obesity for all people.1 Being obese is associated with an increased risk of several chronic conditions.2 People with a bleeding disorder often experience the effects of obesity immediately, as excess weight can limit joint mobility and may lead to more frequent joint bleeds.2 Maintaining a healthy weight through proper nutrition and exercise may decrease joint complications.3

Before starting any diet, remember to check with your healthcare provider (HCP) or Hemophilia Treatment Center (HTC) before beginning a weight-loss regimen or starting an exercise program.

Good food choices

While no special diet is recommended for people with bleeding disorders, the basic concepts of healthy eating still apply. If you or a loved one has a bleeding disorder, choose a diet that includes variety from each of the food groups. The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) recommends eating a diet rich in whole grains, fruits, and vegetables, and low in solid fats, added sugars, and salt (sodium).4 Balancing food intake with physical activity helps in the maintenance of an optimal body weight.1

Example of a well-balanced meal

Proper nutrition, combined with a safe and effective sports and exercise plan, is especially important to combat an increase in the number of overweight people with bleeding disorders.5 By choosing a healthy diet and getting the proper exercise, people with bleeding disorders can help improve their physical health and well-being.4

The USDA recommends eating a diet rich in whole grains, fruits, and vegetables, and low in solid fats, added sugars, and salt (sodium).4

Check your weight regularly

Many treatments for bleeding disorders are adjusted for body weight. Therefore, if your weight changes, your treatment dosage may need to change. Be sure to advise your healthcare team if your weight has changed since your last visit.6

Get out and get moving

Exercise is just as important as diet. Consider different activities that are safe for you.

Find your fit

Have you tried physical therapy?

Regular sessions with a physical therapist can help keep your muscles and joints strong.

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  1. U.S. Department of Agriculture and U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Dietary guidelines for Americans 2010. Published December 2010. Accessed August 23, 2019.
  2. Thomas Smith K. Weighty matters. HemAware website. Published January 30, 2015. Accessed August 23, 2019.
  3. Information for people with hemophilia. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website. Reviewed September 6, 2018. Accessed August 23, 2019.
  4. Brenda Riske; National Hemophilia Foundation. Wellness in persons with bleeding disorders. Accessed September 4, 2019.
  5. LaFranco J, Delorm D. Making better food choices. HemAware website. Published January 1, 2007. Accessed September 4, 2019.
  6. Marianne McDaniel; National Hemophilia Foundation. Treatment of hemophilia A and B. Published 2013. Accessed August 23, 2019.